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Government-run auto-insurance schemes in three provinces continue to charge some of the highest rates in the country, according to a new study.


But the highest auto-insurance premiums are apparently in a province with no such government monopoly.


The study, released Monday, found that Ontarians pay the highest rates of any Canadian drivers.


The Fraser Institute, a right-leaning think-tank, found that the average auto-insurance premium in British Columbia was $1,113 in 2009 — the most recent year for which data are available — $1,049 in Saskatchewan, and $1,027 in Manitoba.


Ontario had the highest average premium at $1,281, while the lowest average premium, $642, was found in Quebec.


The Fraser Institute chalked up the high Ontario premiums to a combination of high levels of insurance fraud driving up claims costs, rate-setting regulations and mandatory minimum liability and accident-benefits laws.


The think-tank estimated the insurance costs based on publicly available data.

Posted 2:40 PM

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